Monthly Archives: July 2007

What I Read This July

Aria vol. 1 by Kozue Amano
The Countess of Stanlein Restored by Nicholas Delbanco
Rises The Night by Colleen Gleason
Whirlpool by Jane Urquart
Spirits in the Wires by Charles de Lint (reread)
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling
Solstice Wood by Patricia McKillip
Specials by Scott Westerfield
Moonlight Knight by Joyce Kelley
The Well of Souls by Juliet Marillier
The Book of Dreams by O.R. Melling
Whiskey & Water by Elizabeth Bear
Pretties by Scott Westerfield
Gaudy Night by Dorothy Sayers

August Eve

I’ve been cleaning up and sorting files and posts and things today. It’s Lughnassadh this week and I do a thorough backup of my system every sabbat, so that will happen later too.

It’s the last day of July, which means that tomorrow is the first day of August! If you haven’t signed up for the August Writing project yet, you still have time. For once I’m not actively engaged in contract writing, so I won’t be scrambling to try to fit not-work-writing into the schedule as I have done in previous years, breaking my brain and any chance of relaxation I had thereby. Last year I wrote a series of fairy tale-based poetry for half the month before things got too crazy. I had no idea what to write this summer, until as I was cleaning out files I found an idea fragment I’d typed out quickly and forgotten. It’s literally six words and a question mark. I think I’ll give it a try, which means sitting down later today and sketching out a schedule and breaking the writing down into thirty-ish parts, because I’d like to actually write the whole thing during the month for the sake of balance and completeness. It won’t be long, only a few thousand words, so that won’t be an issue. I just want to see if the idea will work.

Mighty Mighty

Am DONE.

Go me! Month-long project wrapped up! (Until the final files are sent to me for for integration, but no ETA on those.)

Taking rest of day off. There may be beer. But only because a glass of wine this early in the day feels odd.

The rest of you? Behave. I worked stupid amounts of overtime last week. I deserve this.

Weekend Roundup

Cats woke me up at four AM by knocking over an empty glass in another room. I got up four times in the next half hour to handle various cat issues. I gave up trying to fall asleep again and have been working since five.

We had a wonderful weekend! Thank you to everyone who shared it with us in some way or another. Not only did we pick up groceries (very necessary) and really really really clean the house (everything except washing floors and windows, including laundry and mowing the lawn and gardening, although by Sunday the bathroom was dirty again, possibly because of the latter two tasks), but Saturday I went on a lovely UK-foodstuffs-import recon and purchasing jaunt with Pdaughter (no Penguin bars in stock at our newly-discovered Bramble House, alas, but I have a packet of real dolly mixtures and Jacob’s club bars and Fry’s chocolate tablets, joy!), and then we had a visit with Ceri and Scott (who have a stunning new car, rendering us victims of new-car envy, and they also spoiled the boy by bringing him a Cars puzzle; “Picture Lightning and Mater broken, Mama, help Liam fix” is therefore the newest order I am given when he wants to play). Sunday morning saw us doing yard work at the in-laws’ house, then we went out to the farm roadside stall on the south shore that HRH has been going to since he was ten in order to buy strawberries and cherries and peaches and peas and peppers and corn. There the boy was carried around by the farmer himself and given a half-pint of blueberries and raspberries and strawberries to eat as he did; the child proceeded to stuff five huge blueberries in his mouth at once, and ate the rest of the fruit while sitting on the cart piled with corn watching the activity around him. He said “Bye bye farmer and strawberries!” when we left. We ended the weekend with a lovely co-coven Lughnassadh BBQ with piles and piles of seasonal food and excellent company all around.

I finally got that month-late baby gift in the mail on Saturday, as well as another small parcel that had been sitting around for just as long.

Despite the fact that the days were full, everything was relaxed and we didn’t feel rushed or overwhelmed at all. The weekend went so well that everyone woke up in a vaguely bad mood today because it was back the work routine again. The boy was cranky because he knew he was going back to daycare (he loves his caregiver and playmates and always has fun, but he misses us and we miss him too), HRH was cranky, and I was already in not such a terrific mood thanks to waking up two hours early. But this week we return to a more normal rhythm as HRH drops back to part-time and I deliver the current project. And then next weekend we’re in ON visiting with my parents, so there’s plenty to look forward to in the next fortnight.

Also this week: a trip to my bank branch on the West Island to deposit this US cheque that’s been sitting here for two weeks, so there will be money again. As it’s in that neighbourhood I’ll be stopping by the Bramble House for those Penguin bars, and possibly some whiskey fudge as well. The fretless bass will also be taken into the local music shop for its set-up, maintenance, new strings, and case that day. It feels good to be catching up on things.

Excellent!

I just broke time and space to do an insane amount of work that could not possibly have otherwise fit into the workday.

I am awesome.

I could keep pushing, but it’s been a really, really draining week, what with the sick and the urgent project etcetera, so I am going to be good to myself. I’ll do a couple of hours while Liam sleeps tomorrow, and another couple on Sunday, and then things will be all ready for the final check and delivery on Monday, a day ahead of schedule. Of course, the deadline is kind of moot since the client still hasn’t provided me with the finalized files as they were supposed to do last week (“they are delayed! maybe within a week!”), but they’ll be reminded that I am not responsible for maintaining a contractual deadline if they haven’t provided me with the complete material. If they’re delayed, I’m delayed; it’s as simple as that.

I’m pleased that a workday that began in such a ghastly fashion turned around so completely.

July 27 Friday Five

1. Favorite pastry?

Erm. Nothing with custard or fruit. Petit-fours? Meringues? Marzipan animals? I’m blanking. I don’t eat things like that a lot; they’re expensive and unless you find a really top-notch p√Ętisserie they’re bland and flat and soggy. There’s a pastry place somewhere around here that makes incredible chocolate cream millefeuilles; I should ask the friend who used to surprise me with them where it is.

2. How do you like to waste time?

Clicking aimlessly through on-line journals and websites. eBay and online bookstores are particularly bad — not that I actually buy lots of things, but I research and compare and think and good grief did I just lose two hours? I don’t consider reading wasting time.

3. How would you describe your complexion?

Fair. Porcelain-like, or ivory I suppose as it has a slight warm undertone. Since I had the boy, the general condition of my skin’s improved a lot (thank gods), but ironically I’ve developed persistent eczema that verges on psoriasis in certain places. You can’t win.

4. What do you hang on to that you should really get rid of?

Vivid memories of people saying things to me that hurt years and years ago, and the belief that they must hate me (and remember the same incident as vividly as I do). Piles of emotional baggage. Socks with small holes in them. Jeans that are way too big for me but I keep just in case.

5. What is the last thing that made you hurt?

The boy stomping on the side of my foot with his running shoe, all thirty pounds of him coming down hard as he danced in excitement at the door to my office, calling, “Maggie, Maggie, come out, Maggie!”.

From Fridayfiver.

Wiktory!

Maybe it was the purposeful look in my eye and the screwdriver in my hand as I approached the tower with the intent of removing the hard drive, but I gave it one last try, and voila — the desktop is functional again!

(Perhaps I will just never turn it off again. Why it worked this time and not the countless other times I tried in the past ninety minutes, I do not know.)

Yes, I have already backed up all my work files to my Gmail account. All my important personal writing stuff is already on the thumb drive I carry in my purse, and… no, I didn’t save the latest Pandora stuff to it last month. I will remedy that immediately.

Then… to work!